Habit 1: Work like every contract could be your last, because if you don’t, it just might be. Gaining further contracts will depend on your performance this time and every time.
Habit 2: Don’t get too hooked on any one research method. If you’re only good at using one or two methods, you could miss out on important projects. Keep your eyes open for training opportunities on campus and at conferences.
Habit 3: Be open to new waves of looking at a research problem. Stumped? Turn your problem around. Ask a colleague who works in another field or a non-academic what they would do. Or ask your research participants.
Habit 4: It’s publish or perish – so publish! Every piece of research can produce more than one paper. You can write about theory, methodology, preliminary results, final results, and problems.
Habit 5: Create a supportive team in your lab or work group. Together, you’re stronger. Celebrate successes. Talk about problems. Help each other succeed.
Habit 6: Be nice to everyone on your way up. The research world is smaller than you think, so you could find yourself working with some of the same co-researchers, supervisors and academics again.
Habit 7: Take good care of yourself. Brains work better in healthy bodies. Too much stress means rushed projects, missed deadlines and burnout. Maintain a healthy diet, exercise and sleep schedule. Good project management should prevent last minute rushes and all-nighters.
Develop these habits and your research career will flourish – and so will you.